Reverse engineering legacy information systems for internet based interoperation

Michael Johnson*, Robert Rosebrugh

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The maintenance of legacy information systems is becoming increasingly common as needs for internet based interoperation drive system changes. This paper outlines new techniques for achieving interoperability among legacy information systems, usually without making major changes to the legacy code. The techniques involved use a limited type of reverse engineering to establish a formal model of relevant parts of the legacy systems, and they use existing interfaces to communicate between the code written to support the reverse engineered models and the legacy code. Interoperation is then achieved using mathematical techniques to support common logically data independent views of the reverse engineered models. The paper is somewhat theoretical as it provides a detailed exposition of the new techniques, but the techniques themselves are currently being tested in industrial applications with considerable success, and they are based on a framework which has been used in a number of major consultancies.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIEEE International Conference on Software Maintenance, ICSM
EditorsPaolo Nesi
Place of PublicationPiscataway, NJ
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)0769511899
Publication statusPublished - 2001
EventProceedings IEEE International Conference on Software Maintenance (ICSM 2001) - Florence, Italy
Duration: 7 Nov 20019 Nov 2001


OtherProceedings IEEE International Conference on Software Maintenance (ICSM 2001)


  • Category theory
  • Databases
  • Legacy systems
  • Logical data independence
  • Reverse engineering
  • Semantic data modelling


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